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Archive for March, 2010

We’re finally getting to the point where cleaning is actually just normal cleaning, not a retroactive major clean-up of leftover construction dust or months-neglected debris from the renovation. The house is really starting to feel sort of finished. There are lots of little projects left to do, like sanding, caulking and painting all the trim, but we’ve taken care of some of the major eyesores.

Nick cleared out the sleep loft–took all the boxes and bins we were storing up there down to the basement storage heap instead. Then he scraped up all the spray-foam insulation that was stuck to the plywood floor of the loft. We plan on laying down the ash wood we never used for Sadie’s room up here to give the loft a finished feel. Our house is so small that hosting guests without a dedicated guest space could be difficult, so we’re hoping guests won’t mind sleeping in the loft. Currently, it can only be reached by a rickety old painter’s ladder. We searched online for a ship’s ladder, which would be perfect, but discovered that they cost several hundred dollars, even when you buy used ones. So we asked our neighbor, carpenter Ben, if he could make us one, but he doesn’t have time since he and his wife started their catering business (helpful plug: Bazkari Catering). Nick’s dad is coming next week for a visit, and we’re going to give him the choice of climbing up to the loft and sleeping on a futon mattress or camping out in the library/sewing room/kids’ room on an air mattress.

The other little job involved finally putting up our bathroom shelves. Slowly but surely, we’re making progress. The latest on the bathroom tile is that contractor Ben won’t get a chance to work with the tile mason until sometime after May 5, when he gets back from visiting his fiance in India. So, we’re still roughing it to a degree, but more and more it’s feeling like home. I think the longer daylight hours definitely help. I can actually see when I get home from work, so I feel motivated to work on projects or clean things up instead of letting things pile up until the weekend.

And finally, our little spell of warm weather got me thinking about plants. My mom and I went to the garden show a couple of weekends ago, and then,  since I don’t know a hydrangea from a watering can, I went to the library to check out books on plants and gardening. I’d like to get a dozen plants for the deck to give it more the feel of a plein air room than a deck, so it’s a place we’ll wander in and out of like any other room in the house. In particular, we want to get a trellis with climbing vines of some sort to park right in front of the wall of the neighboring condo building so we aren’t looking at plain green siding all summer. Some flower boxes for the railings, a few pieces of outdoor furniture, and voila, we’ll have our little piece of the great outdoors. Unfortunately, we’re supposed to wake up to snow tomorrow morning, so I have no idea when any of the planting and landscaping is actually going to happen.

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First, some renovation news: our tile order won’t be coming in until April 12. That means we won’t have a tiled tub surround until probably the middle of April, at the earliest, which means we will have been without a shower for nearly 6 months when all is said and done. Sort of incredible, if you think about it. But we’re just not going to think about it.

And, on another note altogether, we have some much happier, bigger news: Two Cats is gaining a new family member. No, not another cat (or chihuahua). I am pregnant with baby #2! We are expecting our little bundle in early August.

It’s funny, when we first moved in, I remember feeling totally drained and had zero motivation for doing anything around the house. I think I even told a friend that I felt like a mother who had given birth and then shunned her needy baby. Well, turns out I was onto something. We’re pretty sure I conceived about two weeks after we moved in, and shortly after that my motivation and energy levels plummeted. I thought I was just exhausted from the energy expended from packing up the old apartment and moving, which I”m sure contributed to my malaise, but with pregnancy hormones raging, I never quite recovered from the move, and was pretty much catatonic for the last two months of 2009. I’m four months along now and feeling much better–less tired, less nauseous, and feeling like less of a bump on a log.

Our little house might start to feel a lot smaller with two kids running around, but we’re ready. We have enough friends in New York living with children in apartments to know that you can raise happy kids in small spaces. I think it’s going to come down to being super efficient and organized, purging even more of our stuff, and getting really good at creating storage niches and building shelves. And, of course, I still hang on to the dream of buying a piece of the Horseman’s yard. Being able to fling open the door and run outside is a great feeling for a kid, and I hope ours can have that someday.

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